Improving global prehospital and emergency medicine, public health, and disaster health care and preparedness

Student & Young Professional

Youth engagement at the post-secondary level is minimal in disaster and emergency medicine knowledge development. Many graduate programs often require or prefer individuals to be working professionals in the field of humanitarian health care when they apply. To address the gap in learning for post-secondary students, the WADEM Student and Young Professional Special Interest Group (SYP-SIG) strives to provide an open platform, resources, informational webinars, and workshops for individuals who are interested in or looking to begin a career in disaster and emergency medicine.

Check Out the SYP-SIG’s Virtual Presentations & Discussions

Are Lessons Ever Learned? Reflections on Pandemics Past, Present, and Future - Dr. Peter Marghella

Webinar Date: 24 April 2024

Are Lessons Ever Learned? Reflections on Pandemics Past, Present, and Future - Dr. Peter Marghella

This presentation includes a discussion of the five factors influencing an increase in the frequency, scope, scale, and impact of pandemics (and other major disasters). Also discussed are initiatives that may enhance our collective “posture of preparedness" for the health care and public health sectors.

Crisis Communications - Dr. Jay McIsaac

In this presentation, Dr. Jay Mcisaac discusses the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) resources for Crisis and Emergency Risk Communications (CERC), covering the four phases of a crisis and exploring the six principles of CERC.

Pediatric Disaster Preparedness - Dr. Mark Cicero

Dr. Mark Cicero from Yale University presents - "It Will Happen Again: Pediatric Disaster Preparedness and Response." This lecture was organized by the Student and Young Professionals SIG in May 2023.

Learning objectives from this lecture include:

  • Understand similarities and differences between pediatric and adult disaster readiness;
  • Consider scene stabilization, triage, treatment on scene, and transport decisions for natural and human-caused disasters; and
  • Discuss means for EMS and Hospital disaster training and systems testing.

Evidence-Based Approaches for Assessment of Targeted Violence Risk - Dr. Victoria Balenger

In this presentation, Dr. Victoria Balenger discusses targeted violence in school, workplace, and health care settings and describes the interdisciplinary process of Threat Assessment and Management (TAM), highlighting the use of validated Structured Professional Judgment (SPJ) instruments to help systematize individual case investigations and wider prevention efforts.

Dr. Balenger a retired FBI Psychologist, a Certified Threat Manager through the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals (ATAP), and a credentialed Insider Threat Professional through the US Department of Defense (DoD). She is an expert in behavioral analysis and has supported individual threat assessment investigations, behavioral assessment teams, and insider threat programs during her career.

Presentation Slides

Student and Young Professional SIG Leadership

Morgan Davis, MS, BS
SIG Co-Lead
Medical Student; Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine at Quinnipiac University
Andrew Shanes, DO
SIG Co-Lead
Emergency Medicine Resident; NewYork-Presbyterian - Queens
Ilana Shecter, DO
SIG Co-Lead
Transitional Year Resident; Brooke Army Medical Center

With the goal of bringing together students and young professionals of all nationalities and future health care professionals, the SYP-SIG has created a Facebook page to facilitate new members connecting and joining the SIG. Please reach out to us for further information on joining the SIG or creating one at your institution –

Vision and Objectives

Vision: The vision of SYP-SIG is to bring together interested students and young professionals from around the world to strengthen their knowledge and skillset in disaster and emergency medicine and foster SYP-SIG chapters at institutions with resources and support for capacity building and greater youth engagement.

Objectives: The objectives of the SYP-SIG are to:

  • Provide a platform for interdisciplinary networking among students and young professionals interested in this field;
  • Facilitate communication links between student and young professional perspectives and voices internal and external to WADEM's leadership;
  • Develop leadership to champion WADEM and the student activities to the student community globally/locally; and
  • Receive feedback and make recommendations to WADEM on the development and implementation of student initiatives